the final project

AP Language and Composition
the final project
You have several options for the final project in this class. As we have been focusing on
expository writing all year, and as we have been working our tails off doing it, your final
project has been created to be creative, introspective, and, as is our tradition, rigorous.
Please choose one project from the following options. A few of them lend themselves
to working in groups. If you would like to work in a group, you must present your ideas
and plans to your teacher before your project can be submitted. This step is imperative,
as you do not want to do all the work and then not be allowed to submit the project
(tragic, although you could not be counted a tragic hero – you’ll get this reference soon, I
assure you). Each of the options allows for the development of one or more epiphanies.
Develop one (or more).
1. Write a play. It can be anywhere from one act to five, you can create as many
characters as Shakespeare or as few as David Mamet, but your script should be
original, insightful, and interesting to read. Insert your characters into a situation,
create dialogue and movement, and resolve. Think of stage design and blocking as
you write, and don’t forget the stage directions!
2. Write your autobiography – a memoir if you will – in four chapters. Make each
chapter about a different period in your life, and write each chapter in a different
genre (journal entry, poetry, essay, newspaper article, interview, bible story,
satire, etc.). You have read plenty of autobiographical works this year; you can
reveal yourself as a writer and focus on how you learned to see (Welty), you can
reveal your positions on modern policies and why (Rodriguez), you can provide
insight into an experience that others probably do not have (Douglass), or you can
novelize your life and experience like O’Brien (and Cisneros – remember that one
from 9th grade?). Make yours interesting and introspective.
3. Do a folklore collection. For this you will need a recording device of some kind
and the desire to talk to other people. There are multiple options within this
category: choose one particular type of story (boogieman, fairy, goat man,
bunnyman) on which to focus and collect as many stories as you can from as
many people as you can (try to stay in this region), choose a family story or a
collection of family stories on which to focus and try to go back as far as you can,
collect e-mail legends of the same nature (AIDs Mary, Gang initiation rites, organ
stealing), or choose a superstition or ghost story (family or otherwise) and collect
the story. Compile the stories and write an insightful analysis of the teller, the
story, and the story’s (or superstition’s) purpose. You can come to me if you need
help on this one – It’s an entirely new kind of writing.
4. Write your own, personal manifesto. Do you know what would make the world a
better place? Are you sure that your way is the best way? Write it down! Check
out examples of other people’s manifestos (“The Communist Manifesto” is the
most popular one). Don’t know what a manifesto is? Do some research. Your
manifesto should be well thought out and all problems that could arise should be
solved before they become a problem. Not sure if you have solved all the
problems? Ask one of your highly intelligent classmates to read through it with
you and to write down any questions they have as they read.
AP Language and Composition
5. Choose a topic you care so deeply about that it keeps you awake at night.
Research the topic using online databases, personal interviews, and books (that’s
right, books). You can use the internet sparingly, but you MUST make sure that
your source is credible (see me if you don’t know). Write a persuasive research
paper that defines the problem, identifies the issues, and offers a well researched
solution. If you choose, you may make a documentary (reflect back on the
documentaries we’ve seen this year for guidance) instead of writing a paper, but
you must turn in a written copy of your script and all of your source material as
part of your project, and this documentary must still identify the problem, issues,
and a proposed solution, as well as the audience and purpose of your
documentary. As with your AP Lang research paper, PAPERS SUBMITTED WITHOUT
AUTOMATIC FAILURE (50%). Evidence of plagiarism will result in zero points awarded.
6. Present a project to your teacher. If you are not interested in any of the above
options, develop your own and bring your idea to the teacher. You will need to
do this soon, so that the two of you (you and your teacher, of course) can start
developing your idea into a workable project – and it must involve writing!
These projects can be presented in multiple forms. A written copy is required, but if you
want to make a documentary out of your folklore collection, produce and stage your play,
or publish your autobiography on the web (with pictures, of course), please do not be
discouraged from doing so. The more creative the presentation, the more pleasurable it is
to grade (and you know what that means…wink wink).
Here are the rules (yes, you heard me, rules):
This project is worth 100 points. That’s right – it will play a major role in your 4th quarter
grade. Make sure it’s the best work you’ve EVER done (so get started early, not late).
The written copy of your work should be presented in MLA format - if you don't know
what that is, check my webpage and click on the link for MLA called "Yeah! MLA" for
Make conscious choices about syntax and diction in order to accurately convey your
Now here's the really fun part (and the really hard part)…
You will be creating your own rubric for this assignment. You must create six traits for
your rubric (come see me so that we make sure you’re on the right track). Your rubric
should focus on what you, the writer, would like your teacher to focus on while grading.
You will want to include things that you have done especially well in your project as well
as things that you know you struggle with (forcing yourself, of course, to confront those
struggles and thus transcend your self-imposed boundaries). Note that if you do NOT
include a rubric or simply use a rubric already provided as an example, your overall
grade will be reduced by ten percent (10%). Be original!
You should make at least one appointment with your teacher during the course of the
assignment to make sure that you are on the right track and that your working rubric
adequately evaluates what you plan to accomplish (your purpose…ah, so that’s what
writing is all about).
AP Language and Composition
DUE: Friday, May 20th
No exceptions.